Access to sustainable energy for all in Mali
This 39-month project began on October 1st 2018 in the regions of Sikasso, Ségou and Kayes, supported financially by Swedish Development Cooperation with Mali.
Context and challenges
Geres and its local partners (local authorities and farmer organizations) have launched various initiatives in response to the energy needs of stakeholders in the territory, offering cost-effective, sustainable alternatives.
These experiences gave rise to the concept of the Green Business Areas, an integrated solution supplying electricity to small enterprises, co-operatives and rural services and acting as a rural business accelerator.
In energy-poor areas of the Sahel like Mali, where the rate of rural electrification rarely exceeds 20%, decentralized energy solutions (micro power stations, mini-grids) can, by promoting local processing, offer alternative ways of supporting the development of both basic services and agricultural and craft value chains.
Yet in environments where education systems are lacking, where tensions, social inequalities and youth under-employment are rife, access to electricity cannot on its own systematically generate inclusive economic development.
By establishing a global ecosystem conducive to the development of rural entrepreneurship, the GBA can then serve as a development tool for rural territories, creating value and jobs.
Electricity production is based on locally available renewable energy sources, which primarily means solar in the Sahelian zone. Sized according to the needs of rural businesses, the GBA provides an attractive technical and economic model for the private sector and rural electrification operators.
Objectives and solutions
The project makes an active contribution to Geres scaling up strategy in the rollout of decentralized solutions.
It focuses on four key operational priorities:
1. Increasing renewable energy production in rural territories according to the needs of productive users of energy, through support for decentralized clean energy solutions, particularly Green Business Areas, promoting sustainable management and governance systems.
2. Supporting very small rural enterprises and community groups to maximize the economic (added value, jobs) and social (food security, decent work, inclusion) benefits of energy access and develop the local economic fabric.
3. Establishing the conditions for ongoing management of the GBAs by setting up a social enterprise and mobilizing various funding sources.
4. Documenting and circulating the project results to the stakeholders and disseminating the lessons learned and benefits at local, regional and national level to stimulate wider-scale replication.
In the long run, the project’s goals include:
- 8 Green Business Areas operating in the three project regions
- 80 MWh/year produced from renewable energy sources and consumed by rural businesses
- 52 MWh/year for pumps in the vegetable production sector
- 120 Very Small Enterprises accessing high-quality electricity 24/7
- 16 vegetable production schemes with improved water pumping facilities
- 250 direct jobs created and 750 indirect jobs consolidated
- Turnover of at least €500,000 generated by the VSEs (in year 3)
- 250 artisans and traders with access to decent working conditions
- 1 social enterprise set up to manage and develop the new GBAs
Activities are carried out by Geres Mali in partnership with AMEDD – Association Malienne pour l’Eveil au Développement Durable [Malian sustainable development association], the national State agencies (AMADER, ANADEB, AER) and technical partners (Association la Voûte Nubienne, Kafo Jiginew, etc).
WATCH THE PROJECT ON VIDEO
The first 100% renewable Green Business Area in Konséguéla
The activities and management of the Green Business Area of Konséguéla
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